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Nephrology & Hypertension
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Renal Unit Staff


Prof Brian Rayner - Head of Division


Brian Rayner is Head and Director of Research of the Division of Nephrology and Hypertension at the Groote Schuur Hospital and University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa, and is a past President of the Southern African Hypertension Society. He graduated in M.B.Ch.B. from University of Cape Town in 1978, obtained Fellowship of the College of Medicine (SA) in 1986, and has a Master of Medicine and PhD from the University of Cape Town.  His doctoral thesis studied salt sensitivity and salt sensitive hypertension in indigenous South African people. He received the World Hypertension League Award for Notable Achievement in Hypertension in 2014 in his work related to his doctorate.

Brian Rayner's active research interests are therapy of hypertension, mutations in the ENaC, genetic determinants of salt sensitivity, HIVAN, vascular calcification and chronic kidney disease, primary aldosteronism, assessing adherence in hypertensive patients, ethics of rationing dialysis therapy, AKI and genetics of severe hypertension in blacks. He has a major interest in hypertension guidelines, and together with Profs Seedat and Veriava wrote the 2014 South African Hypertension Practice Guideline. He has 91 publications in peer reviewed journals, is on the editorial board of the CVS Journal of Africa, and Nephron Clinical Practice, and acts as a reviewer for many peer reviewed international journals, has made over 100 presentations at local and international congresses and has written 6 chapters in books. 

A/Prof Ikechi Okpechi MBBS, FWACP, PhD, Cert Nephrol (SA) Phys

Ike Okpechi is specialist nephrologist and Associate Professor at the Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, University of Cape Town. He is also head of general nephrology in the division. His research interest is in the area of kidney diseases in Africans related to lupus nephritis and other glomerulopathies. He is a Principal Investigator in the ALUGEN consortium and he is the convener for the MSc Med and PhD in Nephrology academic programs at the University of Cape Town. He is a member of the International Society of Nephrology (ISN) where he serves as Educational Ambassador for the ISN to Africa and also a member of the International Society of Hypertension (ISH) where he serves as member of the Regional Africa Advisory Group (RAG).



Office: 0214043321


Fax-to-email: 0864049607

Email: ikechi.okpechi@uct.ac.za


Dr Zunaid Barday MBChB (UCT), FCP (SA), Cert Nephrology

His interests are transplant nephrology and immunology, as well as photography and mountain biking! He runs the medical Transplant Service with the able assistance of Sister Goliath and Nurse du Plessis. He is also closely involved working up living kidney donors. Professional affiliations include being a member of the the South African Renal Society, the International Society of Nephrology, the South African Transplant Society and TSS.




Dr Nicola Wearne BA Med Sci, MBChB (honors) USyd Aust, FCP, Cert Nephrology


She has clinical interest in peritoneal dialysis and is actively involved in research activities involving peritoneal dialysis outcomes in South Africa. She has a keen interest in HIV associated kidney disease and has published in peer reviewed journals and book chapters in this field.  She is also very involved in both postgraduate and undergraduate teaching programs at the University of Cape Town where she convenes the 4th year medical program and part 1 physician examination. She is a member of the International Society of Nephrology and South African Renal Society.




email: nicola.wearne@uct.ac.za

Erika Jones MBBCh(Wits), PhD  (UCT), FCP, Cert Nephrology

Her interests are particularly in hypertension, having done her PhD in this area. One of the aspects of hypertension that she is studying currently and which is of major concern to nephrologists in Cape Town, is the rising incidence of young hypertensives with end stage renal disease in relation to methamphetamine usage.






Charles Swanepoel MBChB(UCT), MRCP (UK), FRCP (Edin)

Prof. Charles Swanepoel is an Emeritus Associate Professor in the Division of Nephrology. He continues with research and teaching at UCT. He serves as a subject Editor for Nephrology, as well as being a member of the Editorial Board of Kidney Diseases and has published in various nephrology journals including, Kidney International, NDT, American Journal of Kidney Diseases, Nephrology and Nature Reviews Nephrology.
Charles is a member of the South African National Ministerial Advisory Committee which speaks to kidney diseases and Transplantation in South Africa.  He has contributed significantly to the development of guidelines for the management of patients with CKD and AKI in South Africa.
Currently, he is President of the African Association of Nephrology (AFRAN) and is the Medical Director for Fresenius Medical Care in Southern Africa.


Michael Pascoe MBCHB(UCT), FCP (SA)

​​Mike started in Nephrology at the Churchill Hospital in Oxford in 1973 and worked there mainly in dialysis for 2 years.  Returning to Cape Town and GSH/UCT, he obtained the FCP and then joined the Renal Unit for a year as a Senior registrar and thereafter in 1978 was appointed as a consultant in the department. He ran the Transplant Clinic for many years.  In 1999 took over as Head of the Division of Nephrology until retirement in 2008.  Since retirement has maintained the interest in the unit attending the academic meetings regularly and contributing to the registrar teaching program.  In addition does some consulting for a medical insurance company.


Away from medicine, he spends time with his family, including 4 grandchildren, and continues gliding and fly-fishing.


Peter Heering (MD, FASN)

Professor Heering is Professor of Medicine, Heinrich Heine University Duesseldorf Germany and Head of the Department of Nephrology and Internal Medicine at Solingen General Hospital. He is a member of the German, European, American and International Societies of Nephrology. Amongst many other posts he has held, he is a visiting Professor and Consultant at our Department of Hypertension and Nephrology.

The focus of his scientific work is researching the pathogenesis of renal parenchymatous diseases, with the long-term goal of contributing new pathophysiological, diagnostic, and therapeutic aspects. As a first example of this, he studied the pathogenesis cyclosporin-induced nephropathy on the model of transplanted and native kidneys and on the animal experimental and cellular levels. Additionally, he conducted research on patients with renal parenchymatous diseases as well as clinical and experimental studies of glomerulonephritis as an example of inflammatory diseases. A third focus of his work has been the research on the diagnostics and therapy of acute kidney failure. Within the framework of these three areas of emphasis, he have carried out clinical trials and designed animal experiments and cell biology studies, in order to be able to investigate the causes for this.

With this background in clinical and experimental research, he brings invaluable expertise and advice to our department.


Surgeons - Transplants and Dialysis Access

          ​Elmi Muller                       Delawir Kahn                  David Thomson            Tinus Du Toit


Social Worker

Lungi Hlakudi

Transplant Co-ordinators

​Fiona McCurdie                             Maryn Reyneke


Transplant Clinic/Unit Nursing Staff

   Kristina Goliath               Ragma Solomon            Felicity Du Plessis


Admin and Clerical Staff

Denise Blankenberg            Alison Oosthuizen             Joy Eiman                    Anwar Daniels